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TV executive exodus continues as BT’s head of television quits

TV executive exodus continues as BT’s sport and broadcast chief resigns

The UK television sector has witnessed another shock departure from its top table with the resignation of BT’s head of television and sport – the latest in a slew of executive departures from the industry.

Delia Bushell arrived at BT three years ago with the task of dethroning Sky as the go-to broadcaster for sports programming, spending big to attain that goal including paying £1.2bn in March to successfully retain the rights to live Uefa Champions League matches.

Bushell’s legacy extends to snapping up the rights to England’s Ashes cricket tour of Australia as well as a foray into more general entertainment by signing an exclusivity deal with US pay TV network AMC.

More recently, however, this voracious appetite for expansion has been derailed somewhat by an accounting scandal in Italy, a profit warning and ongoing concerns that Ofcom will mandate the spin-off of its OpenReach division to meet competition concerns.

The UK television sector now seems to be entering an unprecedented period of flux following last week’s surprise announcement that ITV chief executive Adam Crozierwas to depart, leaving the broadcaster to find a replacement at the same time as its rival Channel 4 which is on the hunt for a new boss after David Abraham said he would leave before the year is out.

Bushell is expected to remain in post until June.

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